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Police identify Santa Barbara pizza shop ‘finders-keepers’ suspect


Police confirm they have identified the man caught on surveillance video at a downtown Rusty’s Pizza Parlor failing to return money to its rightful owner.

The Santa Barbara Police Department did not identify the man but say he contacted detectives and the investigation is ongoing.


What would you do if you found a large amount of money on the ground? Well, don’t do what this guy did.

On Monday, October 22, 2018, a man and his wife were eating lunch at the downtown Rusty’s Pizza Parlor at 111 State Street before heading to the bank.

The wife scolded the husband for counting his money at the table in public. Police say the husband then put the money in his pocket before leaving.

Unbeknownst to him, as he left the pizza parlor, the sizable amount of cash fell out his pocket and onto the floor.

Moments later another man wearing a red plaid button-down shirt, who had just finished paying for his pizza, walks from the front counter to a booth near the fallen cash.

The suspect places his cup on the table and proceeds to bend down and picks up the cash. Surveillance cameras show the suspect nervously looking around as he sits down and examines what he has found.

Realizing what he has recovered, the suspect then walks out of the pizza parlor without getting his food or cup.

Less than a minute later, the husband returns to the pizza parlor to search for his lost cash.

The suspect then returns to the pizza parlor, observes the husband searching for the cash, and does not make any noticeable effort to return the money.

Police say this type of crime is called misappropriation of found property.

One who finds lost property under circumstances which give him knowledge of or means of inquiry as to the true owner, and who appropriates such property to his own use, or to the use of another person not entitled thereto, without first making reasonable and just efforts to find the owner and to restore the property to him, is guilty of theft.

Anyone with information is asked to call 805-897-2326.

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